Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Game Thread: New York Yankees @ Seattle Mariners 6/2

In my best Mortal Kombat voice, Round Two… Fight!, between the New York Yankees and the Seattle Mariners inside Safeco Field. The game tonight will showcase another couple of good pitchers on the mound in CC Sabathia for the Yankees and TBA for the Mariners. The game will be played at 10:05 pm ET and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV.

The Yankees have an afternoon game tomorrow in Seattle, a travel day on Thursday and the team is back at home in the Bronx on Friday playing host to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. If you want to be there in person to root for the home team then click our Yankees Tickets link at the top of the blog to get your Yankees tickets in hand now. If not then you can join us on twitter (@greedystripes) and on the comments section of the blog to trash Joe Girardi’s binder like you would live anyway.

That’s enough out of me I will be in bed long before this game is over so I’ll let Sabathia do my talking for me. Go Sabathia and Go Yankees!

While We Wait: MLB’s Best & Worst from the month of May

You probably already know that Bryce Harper led the majors with 13 homers in May and perhaps even that Ricky Nolasco, Max Scherzer, and A.J. Burnett led the majors with five May wins. Or that the Giants won 21 games in May and the Red Sox, Marlins, and Athletics each lost 19 games in the month, but here are some May leaders and losers you may not know about:

The Mets did not hit for the cycle in May. The team totaled 214 hits including 35 doubles and 28 homers, but no triples.

For those teams scouting Cole Hamels, there was plenty to judge. Hamels threw 650 pitches in May, second only to free agent-to-be David Price, who threw 656.

Windy City, indeed. The Cubs swung and missed 576 times in May, striking out 226 times - most of any club.

The Cardinals got their money's worth out of Seth Maness - the reliever appeared in 16 games, more than any other pitcher.

Corey Kluber pitched 42 2/3 innings in May and struck out 60 batters (walking just six) while Michael Pineda pitched 33 innings and walked just three (striking out 35).

Jason Kipnis got off to a slow start this season hitting just .218 in April, turn the calendar to May and he was baseball's leading hitter - batting .429 and reaching base 73 times, more than any other batter.

Moneyball still lives in Oakland. The A's were the only team without a sacrifice bunt in May.

The crazy eights of May included Twins starter Kyle Gibson inducing eight double plays while Joe Mauer and Ryan Zimmerman each hit into eight DPs.

Red Sox DH David Ortiz batted .214 in May, part of an anemic Boston offensive attack. Barely beating – the heart of the Red Sox batting order (the 3-4-5 hitters) combined to hit .216 in May, the lowest of any team.

Pitcher Tyson Ross has no future as a night watchman - in May, he allowed 14 stolen bases.

Colorado's Charlie Blackmon had a rocky month of May, getting hit by seven pitches.

Kolten Wong, Kipnis, and A.J. Pollock each had 16 hits from the seventh inning on, the most in May baseball.

Dee Gordon stole a dozen bases in May, which is more than 10 team totals, and more than twice as many as the Dodgers, who only stole five.

The A's watched a lot baseball in May – actually they watched 907 pitches for called strikes, the most of any team. The Royals took only 572 strikes all month.

Paul Goldschmidt and Kipnis each had 19 two-strike hits, while Tim Hudson, John Danks, and Ian Kennedy each allowed 19 two-strike hits.

Ichiro Suzuki continued his drive to 3,000 hits with 18 hits, all singles, the most hits without an extra-base hit of any May batter.

Joc Pederson struck out 20 times leading off an inning.

Brandon Crawford had 16 hits with runners in scoring position, more than any other May batter.

Yunel Escobar had 14 first-pitch hits in May, the most of any batter.

Goldschmidt drew three intentional walks in Arizona's last game in May. Goldschmidt had nine IBB in the month, the most of any batter.

Jose Quintana and Chris Tillman each endured five losses.

Blue Jays pitchers only picked up one save in the entire month; then again, they led the majors with four complete games.

Glen Perkins of the Twins earned 13 saves in the month, Minnesota had 14, the most of any team
April showers brings May flowers, but the White Sox' Tyler Flowers only hit .188 with one homer and five RBI in 21 games in May.

USA Today’s Weekly MLB Power Rankings

It’s Tuesday and much like every Tuesday this season we have been bringing to you the weekly Major League Baseball power rankings brought to you by the USA Today. The Yankees were almost the biggest fallers in last week’s rankings as the team fell all the way down to the #14 position while the St. Louis Cardinals lost their strangle hold on the top spot. What will change this week you may be asking? A whole lot, keep reading.

Like always we start with the biggest rise of the week and that rise went to the Cleveland Indians who rose to the #17 spot this week up four spots from last week. The biggest riser moving up just four spots shows you how much the rankings are beginning to mean as we are no longer seeing teams moving up eight spots or more in a single week. For the biggest faller this week we turn to the Boston Red Sox who fell eight spots all the way to the #24 spot in the rankings. The 24th spot is the worst ranking the team has had this season down from their highest ranking, the #4 spot. The Yankees moved up one spot this week to the #13 spot after struggling with the Oakland Athletics after sweeping the Kansas City Royals.

To finish out the American league East division you have the Tampa Bay Rays ranked #14, the Baltimore Orioles ranked #16 and the Toronto Blue Jays ranked at #20. The five worst teams in order according to the rankings are the Colorado Rockies, the Oakland Athletics, the Miami Marlins, the Philadelphia Phillies and the Milwaukee Brewers while the five top spots belong to the St. Louis Cardinals, the Kansas City Royals, the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Houston Astros and the San Francisco Giants.

We’re starting to see more consistency in these rankings, less rising and more falling which goes to show you that the sample size is real right now. Barring trades, returns from injuries and losses from injuries what you see now is what you may see all season long from your favorite MLB team. 

The New York Yankees through May in 2013, 2014 & 2015

I meant to get to this post yesterday since it was the first of the month but the schedule was too full to fit in the post. I guess having too much content and not enough time is never a bad thing but I do apologize anyway. Today we take a look at the Yankees record through the month of May the last three seasons. We pick the last three seasons for obvious reasons as the Yankees missed the playoffs in their 2013 and 2014 campaigns and look to avoid that same fate for a third year in a row.

The Yankees record through May 2013: 31-23 (2nd place)
The Yankees record through May 2014: 29-25 (2nd place)
The Yankees record through May 2015: 26-25 (1st place)

2013 Run Differential: +18
2014 Run Differential: -10
2015 Run Differential: +10

As you can see this team actually has the worst record of any of the three teams but thankfully for New York the team is also playing in the worst division of any of the three years. The Baltimore Orioles are not bashing people’s skulls in like they were in 2014 and the Boston Red Sox are no longer the juggernaut that they were in 2013 leaving at least some hope for New York. The bottom line is if the team wants to make the postseason it’s going to likely be as a division winner and not a Wild Card so they better at least win more than the Tampa Bay Rays or heads may begin to roll in the Bronx. 

Game Preview: New York Yankees @ Seattle Mariners 6/2

Tonight the New York Yankees will once again face off with the Seattle Mariners inside Safeco Field as these two teams go head-to-head in the second game of their three game series. Last night we were entertained with a couple of aces on the mound in Felix Hernandez and Michael Pineda and tonight we will watch as the Yankees send CC Sabathia to the mound to face off with TBA (at the time of this writing) for the Mariners. The game will be played at 10:05 pm ET and can be seen on the YES Network and MLB TV.

  • Sabathia heads into Safeco Field fresh off losing each of his last two starts while allowing a total of 11 runs on 15 hits in just 8.1 IP. Sabathia took losses to the Texas Rangers and the Oakland Athletics while allowing home run after home run the third time through the order.

  • TBA comes into the contest with an ERA somewhere above 0.00 and somewhere under 99.99 with somewhere around a 0,1 or 2 game winning or losing streak. The Yankees are going to beat TBA tonight in Safeco Field. 

The Yankees have one more game out west before an off day on Thursday and a return trip home to the Bronx for the weekend. Two more west coast games and one more game, tonight’s, in the middle of the night. Hallelujah, where’s the Tylenol? (mucho respect to the first one to get that reference). Go Yankees!

Meet a Prospect: Ramon Flores

Ramon Flores was born on March, 26th 1992 in Barinas, Barinas Venezuela. Flores was signed out of Venezuela by the New York Yankees during the 2009 season and in the same year the outfielder made his professional debut with the team. Flores spent the 2009 in the Gulf Coast League and started there again in 2010 before the team called him up to Charleston to finish the 2010 season. It was all up hill from there for Flores.

Flores got the call to Tampa to for the last two weeks of the season in 2010 before heading back down to Charleston to begin the 2011 season. Flores began to to sky rocket through the Yankees system in 2012 when he spent time with the Riverdogs and the Trenton Thunder before repeating Double-A in 2013. Flores finally made it to Triple-A in 2014 and is now officially a 40 man roster mate and a member of the New York Yankees.

Flores has a solid and fluid swing without many holes in it especially for a player at his age with a consistent swing and great bat speed. Flores has a great batters eye and is a great for-average type hitter that can hit to all fields with consistency. Flores may never hit for much power but he is a line drive and gap hitter at this point in his career and would make a great addition to the current Yankees outfield.

Flores has a career stat line:

7 Seasons63027233356441254024160313436.272.360.399.759


7 Seasons61213991283833336.9762.23
Flores posted a Triple-A slash line of .294/.389/.429 (140 wRC+) in 42 games with the Triple-A Scranton Wilkes Barre RailRiders this season before the call up on Saturday night. Welcome to the team Ramon and welcome to the family, it is very much deserved and very overdue if you ask me.

TGP Daily Poll: Yankees Win Seattle Series

Despite the fact that the Yankees have to face both Felix Hernandez and Taijuan Walker in their series with the Seattle Mariners New York will still find a way to come out on top and win the series while turning things around.

Vote in our prediction poll on Knoda.com

Weekly Check In: Aaron Judge

The drum beating for Aaron Judge may subside at least for now after Carlos Beltran had a great month of May in the average department and in the home run department. If you read Bryan Van Dusen’s “Will the Real Carlos Beltran Please Stand Up?” article you know that there are quite a few bright spots to build on for Beltran heading into the month of June giving Judge more time in Double-A, and hopefully Triple-A soon enough, to fine tune his skills and continue hitting bombs for the Yankees.

If the Yankees were to call up Judge today this is what they would be injecting into the lineup:


Eric Ruth Named EL Pitcher of the Week

Starting pitcher Eric Ruth has been named the Eastern League's Pitcher of the Week for the week of May 25-31.

Ruth went 2-0 with 2.08 ERA in his two starts this week. On Monday night at Erie, the right-hander from Harleysville, PA fired six innings and surrendered two runs on nine hits in a 6-3 Thunder victory. Saturday night saw Ruth deliver seven innings of one-run ball against the Portland Sea Dogs, aiding the Thunder to an 8-2 win.

For the season, Ruth is 3-0 with a 2.04 ERA in six starts with the Thunder. In 35.1 innings, he's allowed 28 hits, 12 walks and struck out 20.

Ruth is the first Thunder player to be named an Eastern League weekly award winner this season. Bryan Mitchell, Kyle Roller, Jeremy Bleich, Rob Refsnyder and Greg Bird were all honored as Eastern League Player of the Week in 2014.

Your Thunder have an off-day today and will embark on a three-game road trip to Binghamton on Tuesday night. The Thunder return home for a six-game homestand beginning on Friday, June 5 against the Harrisburg Senators. Tickets can be ordered online at Trentonthunder.com/tickets or by phone at 609-394-3300.

This Day in New York Yankees History 6/2: RIP Lou Gehrig

Just a quick reminder to everyone that today was the day the New York Yankees All Star slugger Lou Gehrig lost his battle with ALS. ALS would soon be renamed Lou Gehrig's disease after the Iron Horse lost his battle with the deadly disease. The Yankees arrived in Detroit on this sad day in 1941 and learned of their captain passing away seventeen days prior to his 38th birthday.

Gehrig died in his sleep in his Riverdale home due to complications with ALS. It was also on this day exactly 16 years ago that Gehrig broke into the Yankees lineup for the first time.

Rest in peace Lou.

Also on this day in 1935 the Boston Braves outfielder Babe Ruth finally announces his retirement from Major League Baseball. The 40 year old former Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees slugger wanted to retire three weeks prior to this announcement but was persuaded to stick it out by Braves owner Emil Fuchs. His reasoning was that Boston hadn't played in every National League park yet, whatever that had to do with anything.